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In a concerted attempt to control others, someone from Harvest Bible Chapel (HBC) filed official complaint with YouTube against blogger Paul Dohse’s YouTube account, resulting in blogger’s loss of YouTube privileges.
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I received an e-mail from Paul Dohse this morning alerting me to an ongoing situation he has been dealing with regarding a specific YouTube video he posted, the same video in which I posted the transcript on my blog post here.
Below is a quote from Paul’s recent blog post, The James MacDonald White Paper: HBC Attempts to Expunge Infamous Church Discipline Video, Files Complaint Against PPT; Post 10 of 30
Harvest Bible Chapel has filed a complaint against PPT with YouTube claiming copyright infringement. The complaint concerns the infamous, and haughty video by James MacDonald and four of his elders.
The video was originally posted at the Harvest Bible Chapel website. It is important to note that HBC is currently on a scrubbing mission which we call “damage control,” in spiritual abuse vocabulary. This is a common control tactic we see by spiritual abusers. It is to be expected, sadly.
There was a lot of negative publicity with the video which I will detail later, but take a look at what you will see if you go to the original link, http://www.harvestbiblechapel.org/10780/blogentry/entry_id/372494/Elder-Update-September-2013:
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Here is the cached screen shot. Evidently, the powers that be at the time of this cache had already decided to make the video private.
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As you may recall, the video, showed Pastor James MacDonald and four elders, Paul Inserra, Steve Huston, Randy Williams, and Jamie Harrison, speaking out against two former elders. To refresh your memory, let me give you a sampling of key messages in the video. The full transcript is here.
Pastor James MacDonald said in essence that the elders were mediators for God here:
We believe that the Bible that the authority of the church is vested in the elders. And that when the elders speak collectively in agreement, they speak for God to our church.
Paul Inserra claimed that two former elders are “trying to destroy James MacDonald:”
We need to communicate with you regarding the discipline of two former elders and their combined effort with other former elders, all outside Harvest working to discredit our elder board and destroy our pastor.
Randy Williams named the two elders publicly, saying they are in church discipline:
Scott Phelps and Barry Slabaugh have been notified that they are under church discipline and no longer welcomed in our church until they repent.
Ok, the rest of it is a verbal beat down of the two elders who spoke out against James MacDonald. Here is the deal. This video was posted publicly and was a public response by Pastor James MacDonald and four elders intended for all Harvest Bible Chapel attenders to see. This is important – – it was a public statement – just like a public press release.
I spent a considerable amount of time talking with Paul this morning because I wanted to know exactly what was going on. I wasn’t sure what he meant by complaint. Remember my complaint was a legal complaint as in a $500,000 legal defamation lawsuit, so when I hear the word “complaint,” my ears are perked up.
In this case, complaint means that someone from Harvest Bible filed a formal infringement complaint with YouTube. Paul uses YouTube as part of his blogging ministry. He posts sermons, analyzes false doctrines, etc. It is an important part of his ministry effort, but now YouTube has issued a “strike” against his YouTube account, essentially, he is not in “good standing,” and as a result, has lost some important privileges he uses in his ministry.
As a result of this complaint, Paul:
- has lost access to over half of his 150+ YouTube videos
- had to take mandatory YouTube copyright law test to gain access to his account.
- has lost the privilege of listing his videos as “unlisted.” Now he only has the option of making his videos public or private. Having an unlisted video is helpful when you do not want to make the video searchable, only people with the direct link can access it. This option is gone for him with the YouTube strike against him.
- lost the ability to do Google Group live streaming. It is now blocked. Paul used this feature to live record sermons. Others who were unable to attend his home church could watch the live streaming messages.
We talk about patterns of spiritual abuse on this blog and that is why I originally posted the transcript of the video. Line by line, we could see control tactics used. Interestingly, when the video was originally posted on Vimeo.com, some bloggers noticed something: we were not “allowed” to embed the video. This is a control tactic saying: we want this video to remain on our site where we have ultimate control.
(JA note: when will these lofty pastors ever understand that when they post things on the internet, they simply cannot remove their words? Good grief, this is 2013, get a grip, people!)
As the story of this ridiculous video got loose, it got a considerable amount of attention. I did a quick search this morning to see who covered this specific story of the tyrannical video. Here are some articles (including my original article) I found in my quick search:
- Learn and Discern: Harvest Bible Chapel Church Discipline and Excommunication, Spiritual Sounding Board blog (includes full transcript of video)
- Former Elders Scott Phelps and Barry Slabaugh are publicly ex-communicated by HBC and release a statement, The Elephant’s Debt blog
- Excommunicating elders at a megachurch is messy business, Todd Rhodes blog
- James MacDonald and his elder board’s version of Sacerdotalism, Purpose Drivel blog
- James MacDonald Ecclesiological Heresy, and Lifeway Christian Resources (SBC), Peter Lumpkins blog (there is still a portion of the original video still online in this article)
- Two to One Odds That HBC Elders Are the Borg!, The Wartburg Watch blog
- Deja Vu: Church Elders – Four Grown Men – Make Video to Discredit Those who Seek to “Destroy Our Pastor”, FBC Jax Watchdogs
- Documenting James MacDonald’s fall from Leader to Apostate…one step at a time, Reformed Baptist blog
- Harvest Bible Chapel’s Stepford Elders, Fighting for the Faith, A Pirate Christian Radio Production with Chris Rosebrough (listen to broadcast here starting at 42:57 mark)
- Learn to Discern So You Will Not be Deceived, Living4HisGlory’sblog
So, HBC is acting like a big bully handicapping Paul’s YouTube site. What are they going to do, go after all of the bloggers and complain? You see, they can and have controlled what goes on in their churches, but do you see how they think they can control the words of those outside their church? This is creepy spiritual abuse behavior, folks.
If my blog goes down today, you know why. I am not afraid. I still have my Twitter account and I will be exposing the hell out of this crap. Yes, the “hell” because that is what this is. There is nothing godly about the behavior of the men in church leadership who pretend to act like men even though they try to sell you on a conference on how to “Act Like Men” (this tweet refers to the “Act Like Men” conference that James MacDonald will be speaking at soon). Shameful!
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But I’d like to discuss an interesting aspect here. HBC claims that Paul Dohse has infringed on their copyrighted material, right? Ok, in the transcript, read what MacDonald says:
And that when the elders speak collectively in agreement, they speak for God to our church.
Let’s temporarily put aside the issue that this is blatant heretical teaching for a moment, k? They say that as elders of the church, they speak for God. Ok, let’s go along with that idea for a bit. Tell me, how in the world God’s words are copyrighted? Does God know His words are copyrighted? How does that work? They presume to own the intellectual property of God? This is a pretty interesting legal argument, is it not?
Paul Dohse told me this morning he hopes they sue him. I hope they do, too. Bring it on, Harvest Bible Chapel. Go ahead and sue Paul. I will be first in line to blog and tweet about it along with many others, you can be sure.
Ok, another point that has occurred to me is so obvious, but must be pointed out. If you have a conflict with someone, what is the biblical way of dealing with it? You go directly to the person, right? I already knew the answer to my question when I asked Paul because I know the pattern of abusers, but I just had to ask Paul. So my question to Paul was:
“Paul, did anyone from HBC contact you privately and ask you to remove the video before you got notification of the strike against your account from YouTube?”
Paul said, “Absolutely not.”
When you are dealing with tyrannical leaders, they only behave tyrannically. They don’t know how to operate out of grace and love – – ya know, the model that Christ left for us to follow. Christ acted like a real man. These men aren’t interested in acting like men. They behave like 100% certified tyrannical spiritual abusive bullies.
Unfortunately, this is not the end. It will go on and on, my friends . . . .
Update: I almost forgot. Paul Dohse has the stand-alone video of the statement from James MacDonald and the four elders and will send out to anyone who requests it. His e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
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